A couple of weeks ago, I had to make a return to a local store. At the counter, there were signs posted that read:

The whole world is short-staffed. Be kind to those who showed up today.

I commented to the customer service associate how much I liked the message, and what a good reminder it is. I also promised her I’d be one of the kind people she comes in contact with. :o)

The encounter stayed with me, and not long after that, a great friend – and kindred spirit – who I’ve not seen since pre-pandemic, shared an article with me about “ho’oponopono”.

What is ho’oponopono, you ask?

According to Matt James Ph.D., in his article “Focus on Forgiveness”:

The Hawaiian word ho‘oponopono comes from ho‘o (“to make”) and pono (“right”). The repetition of the word pono means “doubly right” or being right with both self and others. In a nutshell, ho‘oponopono is a process by which we can forgive others to whom we are connected.

Not only does ho’oponopono refer to forgiveness of others, but also, as Dr. James says, of ourselves.

Another source – a blog titled “Understanding Ho’oponopono: A Beautiful Hawaiian Prayer for Forgiveness”, written by Molly Beauchemin, roughly translates ho’oponopono to “cause things to move back in balance” or to “make things right”. She further goes on to say “It’s a very Zen concept. When things are in balance, nothing is off, so to speak”.

In the ongoing, continual life changes we are all facing, we are probably quick to remember when others have frustrated us: at a stoplight, in line at the store, at a restaurant, and so on.

But upon reflection, aren’t we also those same people to others at times?

Approach the world with a ho’oponopono mindset:

  • Forgive those who frustrate you
  • Forgive yourself for being someone who frustrates others
  • Be kind to those who showed up today
  • Be kind to yourself while showing up today

Be the person you want to see in others.